TOKYO, October 8. /TASS/. Japan’s Toyota Motor Corporation will cooperate with the US authorities to investigate how its vehicles end up in the hands of the Islamic State (IS) terrorist organization, an official spokesperson of Toyota’s US affiliate told Kyodo news agency on Thursday.
The spokesperson said Toyota supports the broad investigation carried out by the US Treasure on uncovering international smuggling routes to the Middle East.
Several media reports said earlier that Washington is trying to uncover how Islamic State militants acquire large numbers of Toyota vehicles, including Hilux pickup trucks and Land Cruiser SUVs. It was noted that the extremist organization lately received several hundreds of new Toyota cars.
The car manufacturer says that the company ceased operations in Syria from 2012. However, videos of IS parades on the territory of Syria show that more than two-thirds of cars they use were produced by Toyota. The company’s spokesperson said that Toyota cannot track the routes of vehicle delivery if cars were stolen and resold.
The Islamic State is an extremist organization banned in Russia. In 2013-2014, it called itself the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL). In June 2014, IS announce the establishment of the "Islamic caliphate" on the territories seized in Iraq and Syria. According to US’ Central Intelligence Agency, the extremist group includes around 30,000 people, while Iraqi authorities claim there are around 200,000 in IS. Among members of the group are citizens of 80 countries, including France, Great Britain, Germany, Morocco, Saudi Arabia, US, Canada, as well as Russia and other CIS countries. According to reports, militants now control around 40% of the Iraqi territory and 50% of the Syrian territory.